Moving Tips Wanted

by jessicaturner on August 9, 2012

I’m still pinching myself.

On Saturday we planned to make an offer on a house, but my realtor got a call that the owner of the house we wanted had just accepted an offer. We cried and spent the rest of the weekend trying to find another house.

We found another house on Sunday.

We got the paperwork ready to make an offer Monday afternoon.

Right before we made the offer, my realtor got a call.

The Saturday house that we loved and lost, was available. The financing for the first buyer fell through.

We rushed to get an offer in.

Yesterday, it became official.

We have a contract on this house.

I can’t believe that this is going to be our new home.

We are so excited.

We close August 31, then will rent our condo for our buyer until mid-September (because of Matthew traveling to Sri Lanka with World Vision + an annual writers weekend I have, we couldn’t make the 31st close date work).

So, we have a month to get ready.

I know many of you have moved before, so I want to know…

What are your best moving tips?

{ 77 comments… read them below or add one }

Karen R August 9, 2012 at 6:18 am

Get paper cartons for packing, they are just the right size so you can fill them and still pick them up and they are sturdy!
Clearly label your boxes with the contents and the room that it will go into in the new house.
Stack boxes for each room together (ex. all kitchen boxes in one place) so that when the boxes are loaded and moved they will be together and easier to find in new location.
If you haven’t used it, don’t pack it and move it-get rid of it!


Heather Ferguson August 9, 2012 at 7:21 am

Congratulations!!! That yard is gorgeous. My best tip is to write on each box not only what’s in it, but also what room it will need to go to. This way, if you have people helping you move, they can deliver the boxes to the correct room and make it much easier for you when you start unpacking. I also totally agree with the previous poster…take the time to purge as you pack. If you don’t use it now, then either toss or donate rather than moving it to your new place.


Lydia Palinkas August 9, 2012 at 7:32 am

Having moved 4 times over the last 7 years, and once with 5 DAYS notice, my best advice is have a plan and stick to it. If people want to help that is great but make sure they understand your organization. Label label label….you cannot over identify boxes. It will help immensely in the end. And, if you have the time, do one room at a time. Nothing is more frustrating than half packed boxes all over the house!


Heidi August 9, 2012 at 7:50 pm

Amen to the half-packed boxes! Biggest lesson I learned, keep each task small, fill one box at a time (and seal and label it right then), then stack them up in a corner (keep that vision in your mind’s eye of a perfectly bare room with absolutely nothing in it and clean baseboards – I personally found this helpful).

Also, I’d make a list of all the things you plan to bring over in your own car. It’s so easy to say “Oh, that will just go with us in the car,” until you get to moving day and find the Plan was to somehow fit a pile of fine china, your favorite wine glasses, a giant aquarium, 4 pots of geraniums, your mounted set of antlers, your suitcase, the cooler with the food, your four kids, the dog, and your husband into the minivan. Plus all of their “oh that’ll just go with us in the car” stuff. Yes, I did this. I got some pretty incredulous stares as everyone else put it together before I did.


Jenn August 10, 2012 at 8:15 am

Heidi, I did the same thing! The problem with that for me was that the car had to transport my two kids and me to another state 6 hours away. You should have seen my poor kids, crammed in the car with things towering over them and around them… I couldn’t even see out the back! The saving grace was that all the stuff made a little ledge that the DVD player sat on nicely.


Deonne Lindsey August 9, 2012 at 7:35 am

In addition to writing what room and a general idea of what crucial items or types of things are in the boxes (because sometimes you need the containers before the things as you unpack), one of the best things I’ve ever done is pack a box that goes in the car with me and has all my bedding. That way I have a comfortable place to sleep and I know exactly where everything I need is. Also, don’t overpack your books- you may think you can carry a paperbox full, but they get heavy fast, so I’ve always used liquor boxes- they’re sturdy, small enough to not weigh a ton, are a mostly uniform size for good stacking, and are usually relatively easy to get in quantity at a liquor store if you call ahead to find out the best day to raid their boxes after shipments come in.

Have a great move!


Lydia Palinkas August 9, 2012 at 7:39 am

Oh and one more thing… our last move I was extra creative and labeled our bedrooms by number. Thought i hadn’t thought to do that with the bedroom boxes at packing time, it was very helpful and much easier to say “number 3” than “third door on the left”.


Katy P August 9, 2012 at 7:39 am

This looks really tacky, I know, but liquor bottle boxes are the BEST thing to pack glasses and breakables in. They have those individual dividers so once you wrap the glasses, you can slide each one into it’s own slot. We haven’t broken a glass doing it that way yet! It’s also good for other breakables that you don’t want sloshing around in a bigger box.

Any liquor store will give them to you for free. We got ours in Smyrna from that place “Divine Wines” (I think that’s the name) across from the bowling alley. They were more than happy to give us the boxes they hadn’t broken down yet!

Good luck!


terrie mathison August 9, 2012 at 7:44 am

First off — CONGRATULATIONS!!! Your family will make many blessed memories here and this is so exciting.

Label every box clearly!!!!


Lindsey H August 9, 2012 at 7:49 am

Pack a necessities box with must have items so you don’t have to dig them out of each room’s box or but it when first moving in…
toilet paper, paper towels, cleaning supplies, laundry detergent, paper plates/disposable cups/napkins/silverware, easy snacks (granola bars, bottled water etc), travel size shampoo/conditioner/soap, towels, a change of clothes for each family member, baby supplies, a few favorite toys/books for the kids, Travel DVD/tv.

Congratulations – the house is beautiful!


Jessica B August 9, 2012 at 8:16 am

Yes, Yes, Yes! I do this everytime and make it the last box if possible to go on the back of the truck or even in my car if we are moving within the same city.


Lillian August 9, 2012 at 12:00 pm

I usually pack those immediate necessities in suitcases, so they’re easy to find at a glance and don’t get mixed up with all the boxes.


stacey August 9, 2012 at 1:37 pm

This was my tip too! You don’t want to make do when your potty trainer needs to go. And after a long day of moving, my big plans to unpack a few boxes never happened, so having PJs and a change of clothes is handy.


Kristy S. August 9, 2012 at 5:13 pm

To add to what Jessica suggested with a necessities box I would add things like a box cutter/those little retractable x-acto knives for easy unpacking. As well as shelf liner (if you are going to use this) after you clean you can put it down right away and as you unpack you can get organized at the same time (not take things back out later to do it). Having a step ladder as something that is packed in your car or the last thing on the truck (so first off) is handy as well as your vacuum cleaner for getting your new house clean before you bring in your boxes.
On your boxes I’ve learned that having the boxes labeled on the top AND the sides is helpful because when you look at a stack of boxes and you are looking for something specific you can find it so much faster.
If you are able get the carpets cleaned in the new house before you move anything in. We did this when we moved to our new house and it was wonderful. I HIGHLY recommend Big Bear Floor Care (in Nashville) 615-859-1748. They use all natural cleaners (no chemicals-I suffer from migraines like you) and they made sure the carpets were DRY before they left. SO worth it!


Kelly G. August 9, 2012 at 7:55 am

Last time we moved, I set up the entire Kitchen the day before we did the big move. It was the one room that I wanted just right and then on the day of the move, we were able to feed everyone and have one room that didn’t feel like complete chaos. Something I have done with every move is to make sure I knew where our bedding and whatever else we needed for sleeping was. My mom usually has volunteered to make all of our beds up before she leaves so that at the end of the long, busy day, our beds are ready to fall into. Otherwise do what others have said, label, label, label. I used blue painter’s tape on the tops of the boxes and wrote on there what room the box went to and a general description of what was in it. Write fragile all over the boxes of breakables. As you are packing up a box, envision where this stuff will “live” at the new house so you can get boxes as close to their proper place as possible. Have a garbage pile and a donate pile so that you can declutter as you pack. If you don’t want to move it, get rid of it! Enlist lots of helpers. We used the help of our youth group and my husband’s cross country team. Young, energetic and willing to work for food! ha!


Jenn August 9, 2012 at 8:00 am

Congratulations on the new house!
We have moved locally and across states, and my advice is the same in either case: hire professional movers. They are worth every penny. If you don’t want/need them to move the whole house, at least hire them for the day to move all your furniture.

Also, moving can be rather traumatic on little ones- I would let Elias pack as much of his own room as possible, and take him to the new house to see his new room as much as you can in between moves. Maybe let him hang a poster or something fun. We made the mistake of sending our then-4-year old to his Nana’s when we moved from an apartment to our house, and he was devastated that he didn’t get to be part of moving day so he could say “goodbye” to the apartment…


libbywilko August 9, 2012 at 8:06 am

Congratulations ! The house looks beautiful. So happy for you to get the house you both really wanted. Best Wishes.


Sabrina Caines August 9, 2012 at 8:18 am

I didn’t read through anyone elses comments so hopefully this is not a repeat. One of the big things to do is pack a box with all the major essentials you can not live without (like diapers and wipes) and make sure and mark the box and keep it where you know it is.
Have your son help pack boxes so that he feels like he is a part of the move. To help him get ready to move you can get kids books that talk about moving to a new house. Also, show him lots of pictures of the new house.


KatieK. August 9, 2012 at 8:26 am

I had a notebook that I listed content of each box. (pre-digital & cell phone). So maybe current method is to snap quick photo before sealing box.
Photographed outside of boxes. Helped when I stashed bunches of boxes to open weeks/months later (I had to pack & move at Xmas time.)

Quick scribbled note in boxes with bunches of little stuff

I also wrote on all sides, not just top and 1 side.

Buy lots of tape, markers, ziplock bags, etc. Keep moving material in each room to decrease running around especially with kids.

We lucked out by moving 1/2 mile away to in-laws so hubby was able to drop stuff off on way to work before movers.

Still have some stuff in attic never unpacked – why didn’t I ditch or give away?



KatieK. August 9, 2012 at 8:29 am

Another tip – if you know anyone in the ds industry – some companies ship their products in perfect moving boxes so ask around.

Remember books weigh alot – don’t fill a box full with books. Ditch the magazines.


sl August 9, 2012 at 8:30 am

Congrats!! I know you have waited a long time for a house. I love it!! I love the front porch and the flowers out front. I know you will make it adorable inside. Cann’t wait to see your photos of it.


Sarah K August 9, 2012 at 8:33 am

No advice here, but I am reading every comment with great interest!


Amber August 9, 2012 at 8:38 am

Go to your local paper and ask for the “end of the roll.” It is blank paper. I’ve used it to wrap dishes and stuff boxes so things don’t slide around. We’ve moved several times due to my husband’s work and I have been given it and the most I’ve paid is $7. We usually have tons left over and my kids use the left over as art paper. :) Congratulations on your new home!!


Julie August 9, 2012 at 8:40 am

I took pictures of some things (like my son’s toy bins and shelves) just so I could remember the way I had them arranged/organized in case I wanted to mindlessly just put them the same way until I had a chance to figure out if a new scheme would work better. Good luck. I know moving can be somewhat stressful but I always thought it was so much fun, too!


Jessica B August 9, 2012 at 8:41 am

We also always use electrical tape to color code our boxes. We tape them all up and then but one strip of the color for whatever room it needs to go to. That way I’m not hunting for what each box says. I can clearly see that the red box goes to the kitchen. Uhaul makes packing tape like this but I think it is a little pricey. Then I put signs on each room that says red, green, blue etc so the guys no where to go.

I also usually have one area or room set aside to but some of the misc boxes in that might have a little from each room in them. And I usually always try to start unpacking my kitchen as soon as possible. There is just something about a kitchen being done to make things seem a little smoother and less crazy.


Robin Troxell August 9, 2012 at 2:46 pm

genius idea about the tape!


Sarah J August 9, 2012 at 9:01 am

If you can swing it, have a day or two before you leave your old house to CLEAN the new house from top to bottom. It is so much easier to do that first and then move stuff in. Also try to be really planful in how you set up things for organization (kitchens, bathroom) because it’s hard to switch it once you’ve set it and get in the habit. We still have a weird bathroom “flow” in the morning because we have some stuff in one bathroom and walk to another bathroom to get something else. Silly, but just a pain to swap once you’re in! Congrats- LOVE that porch! :)


Jessica Kelley August 9, 2012 at 9:08 am

Someone else mentioned my big tip: liquor/wine boxes for books. Keeps you from overloading a big box and making it too heavy.

A mistake we made on our last move was emptying our dresser drawers. I figured the movers preferred it that way, but turns out, they would have moved it full and we could have saved tons of space in the moving van that we used on boxes and suitcases of clothes. We also underestimated the size of van we would need (forgot about all the furniture my parents had brought for us, sitting in the garage) and ended up having to make two or three trips with an SUV and friend’s pickup truck to get all the stuff that didn’t fit in the van!

As a pastor’s family, we’ve had churches to pay for moving services both times, but even if it was on our dime, I would do it. Moving is stressful enough without doing the hard labor yourself!


Johanna August 9, 2012 at 9:18 am

Congrats!! Absolutely love the house! Can´t wait to se how it looks inside!!


Rosslyn Weigelt August 9, 2012 at 9:34 am

Make a small tub that has the remote control for any important item you will hope to use…they seem to disappear magically. Put sharpie, tape, box knife to quickly slice through packing tape when you are ready to unpack, wipes,and any other essentials you will want to have immediately! Carry it with you….don’t pack it :)


Sonya August 9, 2012 at 9:54 am

I will tell you what I set out to do for our recent move, but it didn’t completely happen because we moved sooner than expected:)

I bought my boxes at lowe’s because they had the cheapest ones. I bought mostly small & medium ones, but I did get a few large for really light packing. I liked these boxes because they were easy to pack on the trailer by size.

I then packed by room. Everything that was currently in that room was packed in boxes together. For the most part it was going to the same rooms in our new home. If it was already stored in a bin of some sort I left it in that and then put some tape over it to secure the lid.

I did make moving labels with the room it was going to, contents, and I added a number (I kept a list of these). I also assigned a colored dot to each room that went on the label as well.

Another thing I did was to separate out anything that we wanted to move ourselves and that would not go in the trailer. I actually ended up putting all of that stuff in a spare room that I could close off so everyone knew not to touch it.

This whole plan worked really well for part one of our unexpected move, but the kitchen and basement never got packed like that. I never used my cute color-coded signs, but it would have worked really well if I’d had to use it. We thought we were going to hire movers but family ended up helping so we did it ourselves.

I was pretty organized to begin with so the packing wasn’t difficult really. It was just a puzzle of filling up boxes and making it all fit. For the most part what I packed by room, went to that room. Our office & extra bedroom got a little mixed up from before, but that was expected and it wasn’t too bad.

Good luck!


Christina August 9, 2012 at 10:28 am

I will repeat a previous poster’s advice- hire professional movers! We have moved 5 times in 16 years and for the last 3 moves used the pros. I will never go back to moving ourselves.


Jen L. August 9, 2012 at 11:27 am

I agree!. Moving is exhausting. At least have someone handle all of the big stuff. They take down the beds and set them back up.

I am so happy for the Turner family. The house looks goregous!


Jenni Hufford August 9, 2012 at 10:53 am

all of these are GREAT ideas! we just a month ago– the only thing i would add would be to use tons of large ziplocks (2 gallon i think?) i packed all of my scrapbook supplies in these, then boxed it up. also, if you can, place all boxes in garage before move- that helps movers a TON and will also keep from possible dents in wall (and it helps you keep your sanity not feeling like there are boxes everywhere). also, sounds silly but google and watch youtube video on how to pack up dish boxes. it was super helpful and we did not have one item break! good luck


Camille August 9, 2012 at 11:01 am


Everyone has already listed lots of great ideas. I’ll only add a couple. I usually wear one of those little utility aprons that wraps around my waist and has pockets. Awesome way to keep your tape, Sharpies, box cutter and chocolate handy while you work. :)

Also another take on the idea of labeling rooms. I label them all not just the bedrooms. Just a quick sign made from notebook paper taped to the door frame. If you use professional movers they may not know what you mean by “den” vs. “living room” or “guest bath” vs. “kids bath.” It certainly cuts down on the questions.

I hope it goes smoothly!!


Emily August 9, 2012 at 12:03 pm

PURGE! You don’t want your house filled with stuff you don’t like! As you pack get a goodwill box going and just get rid of it… or if you have time, the week before you move, have a garage sale with all the stuff you want to get rid of then take all the left overs to a charity to donate! Don’t move stuff you don’t like… best advice I never got. :)


Stephanie Click August 9, 2012 at 1:00 pm



Dale Rose Stream August 9, 2012 at 2:33 pm



Lillian August 9, 2012 at 12:18 pm

This goes along with what others have said about using a color-coding system for which boxes go in which rooms. I got colored address labels to label the boxes. We were reusing a lot of boxes from previous moves (our own and friends’) and this way I knew that the description written on the colored label was the current one, not one of the handful of others written all over the box.

Also, a little tip if you end up buying some boxes: the ones from Lowes have handles cut in them, Home Depot’s boxes don’t.


Elizabeth S. August 9, 2012 at 12:47 pm

Not really about moving, but more about memory keeping: go through your house before you pack it all up and take photos of every room, all your favorite spots, especially your children’s rooms. There’s something really “rooting” about you and your kids being able to look back and see the places where you’ve been a family.
Also, have a sitter for moving day! That way you can be totally involved and kids are safe and get their naps. We’ve moved 5 times in the last 4 years and the easiest ones have been when I know they are being cared for.


Kayse August 9, 2012 at 12:58 pm

Yay!! Congrats!!

Best advice I have is to color code rooms. Then you just stick on a post it or a piece of paper in that color, and it’s easy for movers (or unobservant male helpers) to put them in the right room. We did this with our last move and it was a life saver!!!!

Just make sure you tape the labels on securely. Post its need a little extra sticky help. :)


Melissa August 9, 2012 at 1:02 pm

colored duck tape on the top and side of boxes!! Each room has a different color and then movers can easily put the right box in the right room!


Ruthie August 9, 2012 at 1:03 pm

I didn’t read through all the comments, so some of these may be repeats…
#1 – get boxes from your local state {liquor} store….they are more than willing to give boxes away. We packed EVERYTHING in these boxes! They are just the right size & are small enough that they aren’t too heavy to carry. This was huge for us, because we rented a U-haul and moved everything ourselves, with help from family. These boxes are also great, because they come with separators – this made it so easy to pack glassware and other fragile items!
#2 – Label all boxes with a number and room destination. Keep a clipboard with a master numbered list of contents and room. I marked the boxes I wasn’t sure about to stay in the garage to look through later.
#3 – Put kitchen/bathroom/bedroom boxes in the truck last…these are the first items you will need when moving in – especially with small kiddos :)


Kim August 9, 2012 at 1:43 pm

Moving is really stressful no matter what you do. It just is. We moved 4 times when my kids were little. Two of them when I was pregnant. It was in August in Texas. The best thing we did was to take a deep breath and remember to not bark at each other. Things will get bumped and possible broken. You cannot help it. It just happens. Plan a night out and leave the unpacked boxes behind and rejoice about your new house. Even better if you can have a romantic night in the new house alone without kids before you move in :).


Nikki August 9, 2012 at 2:00 pm

Someone mentioned boxing the remotes all together. Which I agree with but I would take it one step farther and also put all the cables for your TV, computer, printer, router, etc. in the same box as well as parts to anything you have to take apart (like a bed frame). So when you get to your new place and start to set up you have one central box with all the pieces to everything in it. I used ziploc bags in ours and labeled them (screws to crib, cables for TV, etc.). This makes putting together furniture so much easier and you shouldn’t have any missing pieces.


Amy D. August 9, 2012 at 2:18 pm
Dale Rose Stream August 9, 2012 at 2:32 pm

Tip #1: “hire’ help from family & friends for loading and unloading all those boxes, but not necessarily for unpacking. I paid my teenage nephews to be a lot of the muscle when we moved to our new home. I paid them $20 for the day + $20 extra for gas to the one who drove his truck with some of our bigger items (lawn equipment, etc). We were moving about 30 miles & took back roads to avoid the traffic, plus it cut a few miles off the drive. A couple of those miles were dirt road but none of us cared because we are all country-folk haha. If the roads would have been bad, I would have paid them more or taken an alternate route to avoid the worst parts.
Tip #2: COLOR CODE boxes, either by placing colored tape (ie duck tape) on boxes based on what room you need them taken to in the new home. I initally wrote the room’s name on them in the color, but they weren’t obvious enough, so I went back and added the colored tape. SOME of the people figured it out after a while….
Tip #3: Take your most precious and/or fragile items WITH YOU, not in the moving truck(s)….
Tip #4: If you can, have a couple of people IN THE HOUSE with you while the others work outside with your hubby or someone else who can ‘direct’ things. By having someone in the house to help you, the people unloading the trucks/cars DON’T HAVE TO TRACK ALL THE WAY THROUGH THE HOUSE TO TAKE BOXES TO THEIR APPROPRIATE ROOMS!
Tip #5: ONE BOX OF BASICS for your first day & nt there! TP, paperplates & silverware, snacks, drinks and a meal (better yet, have pizza or subs delivered or have your hubby/someone pick them up on the way)…FEED EVERYONE WHO HELPS; one tv and vcr/dvd/dvr set up for entertainment that night, towels for showers and comfy pjs! If you will have cable/satellite there, try to have it installed BEFORE you move in if possible. ie DISH NETWORK MOVES WITH YOU PLAN.


Linny August 9, 2012 at 3:20 pm

We move ALOT! Our next move is next summer from our condo to a house. I’m looking forward to it. I enjoy moving and the getting rid of things that happens in the process!

My best advice is to get rid of stuff as you pack and again as you unpack. As you are packing a room, make a box specifically for donations and another for selling. And do the same as you unpack. If you haven’t seen something in years, or since the last move, you don’t need it!

Also LABLES are your friend! I color code boxes using colored duct tape for each room…living room, dining room, kitchen, each bedroom has a color and the garage has a color too. Then in the house, have colored paper on the door/wall to help people know where things go. I even stick a piece of tape on furniture and lamps and such…so i’m not even needed by those unloading and I can focus on other stuff.

Then once you do move in, go room by room by priority to unpack and get settled in so that you’re not doing a little here and a little there…do a whole room at once, even hanging things on the wall before moving to the next room. First, the kitchen so you can eat! next the kids’ rooms so they an have a sense of stability, then living room and toy room, since that’s where you spend the most time And last mom and dads room.

That’s been the way Ive done it every time and I still love moving! Take it slow and have fun, it’s a piece of your family’s story, moving into your first house! Enjoy! And ask for help!


Rebecca W August 9, 2012 at 3:29 pm

When I get ready for a move I try to make a computer drawing of each new room and where the furniture will go. I post these on each room so people moving both the furniture and boxes into the room will know where to put things.

I also choose a color for each new room and label all boxes and furniture going into the room with that color- I also try to place a piece of paper on the door with the color so it is easy to tell at least the room things should go into.


Shene' August 9, 2012 at 3:33 pm

I agree that you can get lots of great boxes for free from liquor stores, Craigslist, etc. However, I would suggest buying wardrobe boxes for the clothes hanging in your closets. It is so easy to take them down (still on the hanger), hang them in the box, and then take them out and put them in the new closet. We purchased these the first time we moved, then folded them flat and kept them in our attic. They have now been used for 3 moves…totally worth it!


Ashley August 9, 2012 at 4:03 pm

We are gearing up for our 8th move in as many years. We load the truck on Monday- our biggest move yet, from CA to VA.
Start packing boxes 2-3 weeks before the move. Start with closets, linens, unused kitchen items, etc. Pick out clothes for 2 weeks and pack everything else. About a week before you can start packing up the bathrooms, office, wall art, decorations, etc.
Leave the kids rooms intact as much as possible for as long as possible. Get Elias to help you pack his things. My 3.5 yr old has had some tears but after talking, again, she gets excited and loves to write her name on her toy boxes.
Pack the essential kitchen stuff up last.
Also, put all screws/hardware/allen wrenches in ziplocs and tape them to the bed frames/crib. Whoever is putting them together has everything they need and they don’t have to find you or search for a box.
Congrats!! Love the yard!!


Christine August 9, 2012 at 4:03 pm

I have moved at least 4 times. My last move was a DYI.
I was able to get used moving boxes from a moving company.
Good place to get mattress boxes and wardrobe boxes, and thick boxes for packing glassware.
Start packing now because it takes twice as long as you think.
Congrats on your new house. So happy for you and your cute family.


Kim Hanley August 9, 2012 at 4:16 pm

Congratulations! Moving is a BIG BIG deal. I’ve moved about 20 times in my lifetime and am hoping my last one was my LAST one.

These tips have possibly already been said, but here they are again!

First off – you must have some time – even just a few hours to clean the kitchen and bathrooms to YOUR specifications before any boxes come in.

Then – purchase some plastic brightly colored “tubs”. In these tubs put your daily-use items – toothbrushes, toothpaste, bath towels, shampoo, soap, a change of clothing, etc. for all members of your house, bedding for each bed, a few plates, cups, forks, etc. Only the items you know you’ll want before you climb into bed that first night. Put those in the truck LAST. When they are removed, tell the people carrying them that they go INSIDE the house, placed in the room that will have the least amount of furniture.

Since you have a garage, I highly recommend using that space as a landing pad for all the other boxes. Move the furniture into the house into the rooms they go in, but leave all the well-labeled boxes in the garage. Designate a spot within for each room of the house. Then, as you are unpacking, you can easily tackle one room at a time and not be tripping over all of those boxes in your way within the room. Take one box at a time from the garage to the designated room in the house, open the box. Have a trash can nearby so you can purge again as you are putting items away. Immediately break down the box and take it to the break-down pile in the garage, grab another box and go.

You’ll definitely appreciate having an organized home right off the bat and you won’t feel nearly as claustrophobic surrounded by boxes. You’ve got your everyday items in a tub, so you don’t HAVE to unpack each of the boxes in the garage the first night you’re there. Take time to enjoy your new home. Order pizza to be delivered that first night.

I know I rambled… sorry:) I love moving!!! I love moving!!! I love moving!!! NOT!


Leslie August 9, 2012 at 4:59 pm

Best thing I did was buy the large Rubbermaid boxes to move things in. They can cost anywhere from 5-10 dollars but they are re-usuable and perfect for storage of Christmas items, keepsakes etc. Also, try to put like items in boxes together. Kitchen items with kitchen items. Bedroom with bedroom. Label the boxes and then have maybe 1-2 boxes of misc. stuff that just gets left toward the end of packing.


Ann August 9, 2012 at 5:39 pm

If your new home has any wood floors put down cardboard or thin plywood when moving any appliances or large furniture across them to avoid scratches.
Congratulations! The house and yard are beautiful, you must be so excited! :)


Pat Houser August 9, 2012 at 7:22 pm

Congrats, and glad your plans worked out…..via a slight bump in the road. When we used to move with our jobs every year or so, I did what so many suggested which is pack a couple of boxes with the things in it I knew I’d need right away, personal objects and household items. I would color code each room, kitchen was yellow, so all boxes for the kitchen were coded with yellow, each side, bottom and top. I tried naming the rooms, but it seemed more confusing for the movers.

I also went through junk drawers, shelves, closets as the movers will pack everything, including scraps of paper. But I sure recommend professional movers, so much easier, and everything is insured. Just know if you pack items to put on the moving van, they are NOT insured.

All the best, can’t wait to see more on the new home, it is absolutely fantastic.
Hugs Pat


Sue LW August 9, 2012 at 7:54 pm

Congrats on the house! Moving with littles is always a challenge. As a military family, we move every couple years or so. Everyone has had great ideas– just a couple to add: let the kids loose on their boxes with crayons, markers, and stickers. It will keep them busy for a while and then the kids light up when they see their boxes again– really helps with anxiety at seeing their toys packed away. We bag all electronic items together- cords, remotes, etc… I also make sure I have done a complete backup of all my computer files before moving.
Blessings to you~ it’s exciting and exhausting… praying you feel settled soon!


Joanne August 9, 2012 at 8:18 pm


When we moved two hours north in January one thing that I found really helped was getting small ziplock bags for the screws etc for things you have to disassemble – like cot, change table etc. Put all the screws etc for one thing in one bag and label it and have one box that you put all the little baggies into and then you wont be stressed looking for them when its time to build that item. We also put bed legs in the same box too.

Have fun moving!


Jen August 9, 2012 at 8:31 pm

How awesome! Congratulations!

We also use the color coding method, it works amazingly well because everyone knows their colors. We let our kids use their favorite colors for their bedrooms and the playroom! They also get a kick out of coloring their boxes with brightly colored markers, keeps me busy for a bit too ; )

One additional tip… We definitely don’t unload dressers… We buy a roll of shrink wrap and wrap dressers closed. This works like a charm, and you don’t have to worry about drawers flying out because they are secure!!! A huge time saver from packing all the contents in boxes.

Best of luck to the four of you!



Betsy August 9, 2012 at 9:10 pm

Apple Boxes!
They are sturdy, FREE, and the same size so it makes packing the moving truck much easier.


Keshet Starr August 9, 2012 at 9:36 pm

Honestly? Patience! We moved from an apartment to a house 2 months ago, and while we’re basically up and running, the decor/projects/final unpacking is taking a lot longer than I thought it would. I think it helps to go in knowing it will be a few months until it’s really together (at least!) but the patience is needed because you just can’t stop your life for a month to unpack! Also, I packed suitcases for myself, (hubby packed his) and the baby so that we had a bunch of outfits, shoes, etc available as we unpacked. Congratulations!


Nicky August 10, 2012 at 12:32 am

Congrats on the new home, it looks beautiful. I am very excited about all these ideas because my family is moving in three weeks and there have been so many great tips! I will be buying colored tape ASAP. We bought moving boxes from home depot in small and medium sizes, it was amazing how much stuff we condensed down into those small boxes, which are nice sized and don’t get too heavy. And our storage garage looks so wonderful with all those boxes lined up perfectly, no leaning towers of boxes this time around! (I have to find order in the chaos that is my life right now.). Also, I have to say, take the time to get rid of the stuff you don’t love/ need/ use as you are packing. Somebody, somewhere can use it and love it and need it. God bless you and your family!


Andi R August 10, 2012 at 6:39 am

Pack a few boxes of the “need this immediately” box, like the basic pots and pans, sippy cups for kids, clothes for everyone, your computer, camera, bathroom stuff, a few towels, coffee pot, etc. Then put these boxes in your car so you know exactly where they are.
The house looks great, I’m jealous. 😉


Deonne Lindsey August 10, 2012 at 7:43 am

One other tip I just thought of specific to my scrapbooking space, since we’ll be moving soon too. I have nearly a whole wall of those white cubes you can buy at Michael’s to put my scrapbooking supplies in, most with drawers. Provided that none of them feel too heavy full, my game plan is to use a big roll of something like Saran Wrap that I bought at Uhaul on my last move to keep the drawers closed and just allow them to be picked up and moved as is. I will be taking out the pegs and screw covers and putting them in a ziploc bag in my purse so they don’t get lost in the truck, but figure that will save me a lot of boxes and a lot of time.

This wrap is about the only moving supply that I’d bother buying from a place like Uhaul, but it’s fabulously helpful for keeping doors and drawers closed and in some cases saves a lot of unpacking and repacking.


Chris Kristopherson August 10, 2012 at 9:43 am

Moving Tips I came across that helped:

The most important thing you can do is GET RID OF EVERYTHING YOU CAN! Makes life that much easier. Don’t be a hoarder :)


Mama Bree August 10, 2012 at 11:50 am

– LABEL LABEL LABEL! Cannot stress that enough. And not just “Kitchen”, but “mixer”, or “lasagna pan”, but that will help you prioritize what to unpack first (silverware over lasagna pan). it will also help you to start packing this moment and not worry that you are putting things away that you think you might need (ie: boy winter clothes).
– Get way more boxes and way more wrapping than you think you need – I used nearly 4x of each than I had anticipated. I’d rather pack fewer things in a box that I can move myself (push along the floor) when I’m home alone, than a big huge box full that I can’t do a darn thing with)
– whether your are hiring a moving team/truck, get friends to come help that day – esp with little ones. Have them help you unpack the most important items you will need in the first 48 hours – a few cups, the coffee maker, some silverware, the bath towels.
– pack one big bag/box of bed sheets and linens, keep it in your car (not on the truck). When you get into the new house, get the movers (friends or hired) to set up the beds immediately, and get those beds made (that’s where friends come in). It was the BEST BEST thing at the end of our moving day to be able to just fall into our beds whenever we called it quits (which was like 7:30pm we were so tired), and not have to 1 – search for the bed sheets, and 2 – make the beds. best gift a friend can give you that day.
– plan on simple easy meals (even just picking), lots of sandwiches and take the first few days, and be okay with that. it takes the pressure off the first week or so from feeling like a bad mom/wife and allows you to focus on getting the house unpacked and set up, and then you’ll be ready week 2 to get back to the usual meal time routines. No one told me that and I felt guilty for doing it until I realized it was a much needed reality.

those are my best tips from our move (1 1/2 yrs ago). Hope all goes well – very excited for you. Your new house looks so homey and sweet – I hope you are very happy there!


Jenniferb August 10, 2012 at 1:10 pm

If you can, move one room at a time. Move a room and then set it up. Before you know it your house will ready for you to relax in. Congrats on dreams being made and the ones that are to come.


rachel August 11, 2012 at 9:22 am

We’ve moved 9 times in our 6 years of marriage…the best tip I can offer you is to ask others for help! I’ve found that if you ask, you will probably find some (weird) people who actually enjoy packing and organizing! Some more tips:
* use new boxes. They are worth the expense.
* as much as you can, pack everything in boxes, even if you are just moving across town (or in our case, one time we moved across the apartment complex, about 30 yards from our previous apartment)–it is WAY harder to move car-fulls of things than it is to just put it all in boxes, even though it seems like packing the boxes is an insurmountable task!
* try not to get too irritated at each other
* PURGE!!!!! Get rid of as much as you possibly can. You will be surprised at what you really need/want. We’ve had things in storage for a while before and we never needed to touch those particular boxes. We ended up getting rid of 90% of them. That makes your next move (hopefully not for a LONG time, but for us we seem to just anticipate moving all the time now) easier.


Natalie G August 11, 2012 at 6:00 pm


I saw a tip to put cheap foam plates between breakables instead of newspaper. Much quicker for some items. It was on pinterest.

Also, this month on my coke rewards is a free 8×8 shutterfly book with 5 come products. :)


Xtine August 12, 2012 at 7:54 am

My tip is pet related. If the owner of your new home has pets treat the house when it’s empty for fleas. It only takes one miserable flea to get an infestation, especially when the fleas do not find a host to feed off anymore. And with this hot weather they have been a real plague everywhere. We have dogs, no fleas but do have wood flooring all through the house, even in the bedrooms. Carpets will hold the nastiest stuff you do not want to know about and they are the ultimate breeding environment for fleas, hot and humid. Better to treat, just to be safe. You do not want to discover a infestation after you’re settled!


Sarah August 12, 2012 at 8:04 am

Hire professional movers. It is worth every penny.


Kaycee August 12, 2012 at 7:15 pm

Your new house looks beautiful! Congratulations!

My best tip is to mark the boxes with the room you want them to be delivered to in the NEW house. Name the rooms if you need to (we did “front room” and “2nd bedroom” etc for the non-obvious ones). But it helped our friends and family so much with the unloading process. We just put signs on the doors for the names of the not obvious ones and when that grabbed a box they walked it in and made a stack in the room we were going to need to unpack it in!


Alison at NOVA Frugal Family August 13, 2012 at 8:55 pm

Congrats on the new house!! When we moved, I labeled each box with a number. Starting with 1s was the first floor and starting with 2s for the second floor. This way boys/men don’t have to figure out the difference between the family room and the living room but at least things are on the right floor. It helped me a lot with people who were helping move because I didn’t have to stand and direct everything. I did write a list of all of the boxes but I never actually used it. I would also say that I used plastic bags to wrap things in so that they didn’t need to be washed like newspaper dust. Use what you have to wrap things like t-shirts for things in the bedroom and kitchen towels for things in the kitchen. More padding is always better to protect everything. Get some Rubbermaid bins to pack things for the basement/attic so that you don’t have to deal with it again when you get to the new house. Most importantly, have the phone number for the local pizza place because that is dinner :) We ate on our freshly made beds in our new bedroom because it was the only flat surface in the house!! (My mom’s first rule of moving, make sure you get the beds clear first because you are going to need them first).


Heidi August 14, 2012 at 11:03 am

I read several of the comments, but not all, so this could be a repeat– Buy some fresh markers and let your little ones color all over the packed boxes in their own rooms. It keeps them busy, and then as the truck is unloaded, they get are occupied watching for their art-covered boxes that are full of their things. It also makes it easy for those unloading to know that they go to the kids’ rooms. (We had 9 addresses before our 9th anniversary, so we are well-acquainted with moving.) Blessings to you!


Shelbie August 16, 2012 at 11:53 am

Congratulations! What an exciting time for your family. Looks like you’ve got a ton of great advice here already. The one thing I can say is to securely bag and tape all bed/crib hardware to the bed frame. I didn’t think to do this on our last move and it took 2weeks to find the crib hardware. Poor baby slept in a pack-n-play until we could put his bed back together. I also unpacked my kitchen first – we were able to get into the house before moving day so I had the kitchen done. My linen closet came next so that we could have our beds made for the first night at the house. On the days I was able to go over to work on the kitchen I made sure to take my little guy with me so that he could wander around and explore as much as he wanted. I also took a pack-n-play and set it up where his bed would go so that he could start getting used to being and sleeping in his new room.
The only other thing I can suggest is that you have someone handy at the condo to help direct there while you stay at the new house to direct where things will go. This way you can also work a bit on unpacking areas in the down time if you are having friends/family help you move. I found that I was able to unpack a fair amount while waiting for the next batch of people to arrive with more stuff. I also had my mom at the new house to help me unpack. We have very similar organization ideas so that worked well for me. Good luck to you!! I can’t wait to hear all about your new home. :)


Laurie@Aprons for Women August 17, 2012 at 11:15 am

Wow, the house looks great – congratulations! We have moved a few times, and the best tip I can give is to pack each room in its own cartons and label them. That way, when you get to the new house, you know which boxes go in which rooms. Put all the boxes labeled “kitchen” in the kitchen and go through them one by one. Don’t overdo – remember, the boxes will be there tomorrow!

Also – have a couple of dinners made up that you can just warm up in the oven so that you don’t have to cook the first few nights or spend more money on take out.

Have fun!


nic August 27, 2012 at 2:29 pm

label everything you can by the room you want it to go in (color helps for movers i.e. everything for the kitchen has a red label).
and for clothes that are hanging (made them my favorite to unpack), take a section of them from the closet leaving them on the hanger, and fold them together into the box. when you unpack you just pull them out by the hanger and hang them up all at once. super fast!!


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